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Congress Proposes Vital Protections for Whistleblowers as Workplaces Reopen

COVID-19 has devastated countless individuals and businesses, both economically and personally. Local, state, and federal agencies have hastily authorized economic relief programs to help ease the impact on families, communities, and the national economy. To address community needs, many agencies quickly distributed funds with minimal oversight. To prevent fraud and misuse of federal benefits, members of Congress have introduced proposed legislation called the Coronavirus Oversight and Recovery Ethics (CORE) Act, which also includes critical whistleblower protection provisions.

Guidance Without Protection: Restrictive Federal Court Ruling Limits Rights of New York Whistleblowers Who Report Unsafe COVID-19 Work Conditions

In an unfortunate decision for New Yorkers concerned about COVID-19 in the workplace, a federal judge recently ruled that the state’s whistleblower protection law does not apply to workers who complain about their employer’s failure to follow public health guidance.

The narrow reading of New York Labor Law Section 740 by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in HC2, Inc. v. Delaney could have a chilling effect on workers who have legitimate COVID-related concerns about returning to the workplace while the virus remains a threat to their health.